Top critical review
55 of 59 people found this helpful
Can't believe this phone passed quality testing
on August 13, 2011
First, some background - I'm a software developer that has been writing code that either runs on mobile phones or consumer electronic devices that talk to phones, since the late 1990's. I bought this phone for my 14 year old (previous phone - a bullet-proof Samsung BlackJack II of nearly 4 years).
The build quality is excellent, well above par for the class. This ain't a Pantech this or Samsung that. Nice aluminum, excellent screen, resolution, size, battery life, the works. The only hardware glitch is the micro USB port needs some care when plugging in, and the battery compartment is a bit too creative. Nothing bad there, just a bit strange. The hardware feels solid.
The software is for the birds. Not to offend my former collaborators at Qualcommm, but it really is for the birds.
- The HTC Sync does not work. Installed on two Windows 7 machines, in one it does not recognize that a phone is connected, in the other it recognized it briefly then stopped. Even when it recognized the phone, it would not allow anything to be done (nothing was selectable). Punt. Phone works fine as a USB device to copy stuff from/to but will not sync.
- Several 'Oops. An error has occurred...'. We waited them out.
- A couple of hard freezes in the media player.
- micro SD not recognized because it contained other stuff from a previous phone. Deleted everything, works ok.
- a couple instances where the 'NO SIM' message was displayed briefly.
- For the first two days the phone was in 2G mode (why?) then today it decided to go into 3G mode. No idea why.
- The HTC Support Forum will not send activation emails to allow me to sign up and access the support forums.
- Bluetooth seems to be iffy. The Bluetooth guys at work have joked HTC stands for 'Hard To Connect'... I can see why.
Again, with all due respect, I'd like to meet the person who approved the release of the software. These are basic things, not far-out stuff.
And a few praises.
- hardware build quality is excellent
- great price
- good configuration options
- good sound quality
- excellent touchscreen
- Brew MP is decent - a lot better than a lot of other Java Phones
I would say a phone software update would cure most of the above but I would not hold my breath that they'd do one. Pity because the hardware is good, and the device is well positioned in the market (thanks to AT&T's insistence of data plans for everything but Firefly phones)
If I had to consider the other candidates (Samsung Eternity II, Flight II, LG Duh (Vu), LG Neon, Pantech This or That) the Freestyle is well ahead of the game. It's a good phone, but it really pains me as a software developer that HTC allowed the device to be shipped with such serious issues.
Perhaps if we hold our collective breath till we're blue in the face...